Updated: Thursday, March 15, 2018 11:05 pm EDT
Carlton Gary has been executed by the state of Georgia. Read more about his case here.
Updated: Thursday, March 15, 2018 9:55 pm EDT
The Supreme Court of the United States has refused to halt the execution of Carlton Gary.
Updated: Thursday, March 15, 2018 6:22 pm EDT
The Georgia Supreme Court has refused to halt the execution of Carlton Gary. The request was not granted as the arguments from the defense was too similar to arguments that courts had previously rejected.
Updated: Thursday, March 15, 2018 2:12 pm EDT
The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles has rejected a request to grant Carlton Michael Gary clemency. Lawyers for Carlton are arguing that he should be granted clemency due to newly discovered evidence prove Carlton's innocence and would have swayed a jury into not sentencing him to death. This evidence was not available at his original trial because the testings methods did not yet exist. The state argued that these claims have, many times, previously been rejected by the courts and that their is a significant amount of additional evidence that links Carlton to the crimes. Carlton also has several appeals pending before the Supreme Court of the United States.
Updated: Monday, March 11, 2018 11:26 am EDT
Carlton Michael Gary is scheduled to be executed at 7 pm EDT, at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson, Georgia on Thursday, March 15, 2018. Sixty-seven-year-old Carlton is convicted of the murder of 89-year-old Florence Scheible on October 21, 1977, 69-year-old Martha Thurmond on October 25, 1977, and 74-year-old Kathleen Woodruff on December 28, 1977, all in Columbus, Georgia. Carlton has spent the last 31 years on Georgia’s death row.
Early in his childhood, Carlton allegedly showed signs of high intelligence, however he was malnourished and abused as a child. He was raised without a father, as his father wanted nothing to do with him. During his teenage years, he became a heavy drug user and was arrested for robbery, arson, and assault. He eventually served time for a burglary charge. Carlton was also responsible for sending another man, John Lee Williams, to prison when Carlton testified that John murdered a woman. His testimony was later recanted. Carlton was in and out of prison for several years, eventually escaping from a New York prison in August 1977, after which, he returned to his home in Columbus, Georgia.
Between September 1977, and April 1978, seven women in the Columbus area were raped and strangled to death in their homes: 60-year-old Ferne Jackson on September 15, 1977, 71-year-old Jean Dimenstein on September 25, 1977, 89-year-old Florence Scheible on October 21, 1977, 69-year-old Martha Thurmond on October 25, 1977, 74-year-old Kathleen Woodruff on December 28, 1977, 78-year-old Mildred Borom on February 12, 1978, and 61-year-old Janet Cofer on April 20, 1978. The man responsible for the crime was known as the “Stocking Strangler,” as stockings were frequently used as the method of strangulation. For years, police had few leads who had committed the rapes and murders.
Carlton Gary, meanwhile, was arrested and imprisoned in 1978 after committing a string of armed robberies. In 1984, he escaped from prison and began carrying out robberies again. He was eventually recaptured by police on May 5, 1984, in Albany, Georgia.
Police were able to identify Gary as a suspect in the rape and murders, as well as several burglaries, after the discovery of a stolen handgun, with Gary’s fingerprint on it, which matched fingerprints found at many of the crime scenes. Gary was eventually tried, convicted and sentenced to death for the rape and murder of Florence Scheible, Martha Thurmond, and Kathleen Woodruff.
During the trial, 64-year-old Gertrude Miller testified that Gary had attacked and raped her on September 11, 1977. Gary has also been connected, through various evidence, to the rape and murder by strangulation of 85-year-old Nellie Farmer in Albany, New York on April 14, 1970; the rape and murder by strangulation of 40-year-old Marion Fisher in Syracuse, New York on June 27, 1975; and the rape and strangulation (but not murder) of 55-year-old Jean Frost in Syracuse New York on January 2, 1977. On February 11, 1978, 71-year-old Ruth Schwob was nearly strangled to death by an intruder who fled after she set off a panic alarm. Mildred Borom was found two blocks away the following day.
Since DNA testing was extremely limited during Gary’s initial trial, many of his appeals focused on having many of the various samples in the case tested. Results have been inconclusive. Some of the testing would seem to indicate that Gary was not the attacker, however the lab that performed the testing has discovered that some of the samples were contaminated, making their results unreliable. Supporters of Gary have attempted to use this evidence to show that he did not commit the crimes for which he has been convicted. Those who believe in Gary’s guilt point to the other evidence in the case, including fingerprints found at the crime scenes. Additionally, some of the DNA evidence has matched Gary.
Please pray for peace and healing for all who have been adversely affected by Carlton Gary’s crimes. Please pray for strength for the family of Carlton. Please pray that if Carlton is innocent, lacks the competency to be executed, or should not be executed for any other reason that evidence will be provided prior to he execution. Please pray that Carlton will come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already.